Murtha will have to testify in defamation case

posted at 5:10 pm on September 28, 2007 by Bryan

He’ll have to submit a deposition. Hopefully he’ll be more forthcoming this time than his office was when I called them up last month. Perhaps by the time he testifies, he’ll actually know what’s going on in the trials. Not that not having all the facts slowed him down from pronouncing the Marines guilty of murder “in cold blood” starting last year.

A federal judge refused Friday to dismiss a defamation case against Rep. John P. Murtha and ordered the Pennsylvania Democrat to give a sworn deposition in the case.

A Marine Corps sergeant is suing the 16-term congressman for alleging “cold-blooded murder and war crimes” by unnamed soldiers in connection with the deaths of Iraqi civilians in the town of Haditha.

The deaths became known in May 2006 when Murtha, who opposes the Iraq war, said at a Capitol Hill news conference that a Pentagon war crimes investigation will show Marines killed dozens of innocent Iraqi civilians in the town in 2005.

Murtha’s office declined to comment on the ruling. He has said his intention was to draw attention to the pressure put on troops in Iraq and to cover-up the incident.

The Justice Department wanted the case dismissed because Murtha was acting in his official role as a lawmaker. Assistant U.S. Attorney John F. Henault said the comments were made as part of the debate over the war in Iraq.

This is one of the many areas where I’ll depart from the Bush administration, which is in charge of the Justice Department. Murtha slandered those troops and his repeated slanders of them echoed throughout the entire world. Murtha damaged our cause in the war. A civil slander suit is the least of the legal problems he ought to face for that.

And as the judge points out, giving Murtha a pass here might set dangerous precedent.

“You’re writing a very wide road for members of Congress to go to their home districts and say anything they choose about private persons and be able to do so without any liability. Are you sure you want to do that?” Collyer said, adding later, “How far can a congressman go and still be protected?”

Collyer said she was troubled by the idea the lawmakers are immune from lawsuits regardless of what they say to advance their political careers.

If average Americans can’t get away with slander, why should Murtha?


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Comment pages: 1 2

I appreciate all the support you have all given my beloved Corps. If I may respond to the suggestions that Murtha go to every Marine’s Camp or home to apologize? I wouldn’t, no couldn’t, have him darken my door way. I want nothing from that man. I hold him beyond comtempt and as far as I am concerned forgiveness is God’s job not mine in this particular instance.

MNDavenotPC on September 29, 2007 at 11:59 AM

What’s amazing is how he keeps getting RE-elected. Fools all.

Mojave Mark on September 29, 2007 at 12:01 PM

Leaving the Americans with no civil means of protecting themselves from slander by Congressmen would leave them only with uncivil means…

Kralizec on September 28, 2007 at 7:01 PM

El Guapo, JM, if the Justice Department’s opinion that Murtha was acting in the role of a legislator was correct, then Murtha was PRONOUNCING guilt upon these Marines, and doing so as a legislator. That what a a Bill of Attainder is. A BoA does NOT require a vote of a legislature just an act of one or more legislators pronouncing guilt, especially when the legislator in question is in charge of military appropriations…

Murtha, the stupid toad, had no idea that he’d be trapped between the rock and the hard place when he gleefully went before the reporters to smear the Marines.

Either way, he deserves whatever he gets for smearing those young men.

georgej on September 29, 2007 at 3:05 AM

Good job. Krazilec and georgej locate the rock that cannot be swallowed whole except by the MSM who see no wrong with a Congressman isolating a group of accused citizens and pronouncing guilt before the trial.

Now for me to publically agree that Murtha is guilty of being a toad is totally legal, since that simple comparison would be a compliment to Murtha and an insult to toads everywhere who catch flies, look cute, and hold no bad intentions toward the brave soldiers who volunteer to a harsh life and extreme risk to defend our land.

I can also call Murtha stupid without defaming him because he was stupid enough to think he could say anything about the military just because the MSM was rolling him around like a big usefull blob of wax

entagor on September 29, 2007 at 12:16 PM

El Guapo,
Unfortunately, I think this may be the answer you were looking for to a previous question:

http://www.hollywood.com/news/Moore_Lawsuit_Thrown_Out_of_Court/3601220

Short answer: The judge dismissed the lawsuit filed by Peter Damon.

serpentineshel on September 29, 2007 at 9:04 PM

Hoping to see him thrown out of Congress at the very least.

A slander-spewing, America-undermining weasel.

profitsbeard on September 29, 2007 at 11:23 PM

Of course the libs will be complaining that BushCo is stifling free speech and soon will be taking over congress and shipping the the Dems to Guantanamo.

Mallard T. Drake on September 28, 2007 at 6:14 PM

Great idea, but we’d soon run out of small rooms there if we caged all the dhiminicrats with their islamic buddies.

Texas Nick 77 on September 30, 2007 at 6:12 AM

In fact, does congress even undergo random drug screaning? Afterall, no is is above the law.

El Guapo on September 29, 2007 at 2:35 AM

How about manditory intelligence tests?

Texas Nick 77 on September 30, 2007 at 6:22 AM

I read somewhere that Congress does not get seurity screened even when they get appointed to the defence and intelligence committees. Kucinich’s appontment to an inteligence comittee was changed because he wouldn’t sign a pledge to keep information classified.

davod on September 30, 2007 at 7:02 AM

I appreciate all the support you have all given my beloved Corps. If I may respond to the suggestions that Murtha go to every Marine’s Camp or home to apologize? I wouldn’t, no couldn’t, have him darken my door way. I want nothing from that man. I hold him beyond comtempt and as far as I am concerned forgiveness is God’s job not mine in this particular instance.

MNDavenotPC on September 29, 2007 at 11:59 AM

That is exactly why he needs to be held responsible in front of all Marines and not cowering in the corner of some elevator. I have no forgiveness for him as I am sure the great majority of Marines have no forgiveness. Let the Nation see what real Marines think of Murtha. I want him to answer the call, only problem is he is no Marine.

Wade on September 30, 2007 at 10:15 AM

When I look at Murtha, I see someone who needs to be sent to the home.

I agree, Murtha needs to be punished for his slander and removed from office.

dogsoldier on October 1, 2007 at 6:55 AM

Yup – if he wants to slander private citizens with impunity, he should do it from the House floor like everybody else!

mojo on October 1, 2007 at 1:45 PM

Comment pages: 1 2